Play It Forward: Oct. 7-13 — The Dodgers scoot further into October, USC reboots and UCLA gets to the root of Cal, Goff

UPDATED: Monday, 10 a.m.:

Planning out your sports week, one day at a time:


USC vs. ARIZONA, Coliseum, Thursday at 7:30 p.m., FS1:
Here’s the deal about tailgating on the USC campus for a weeknight football game: You don’t. No exceptions, according to a website that the school has set up — /Thursday – outlining all the new rules involving portable parties, parking and public transportation options. As a result of this rare occurrence, for the first time ever, the renowned Cardinal & Gold Picnic at the Coliseum will be open to all game ticket-holding fans (and those willing to cough up $65, as explained on Both the Galen Center Founders Club and the L.A. Sports Arena will be open for a catered tailgate part (at $25 a pop, as laid out on
USATSI_6180744If that’s not enough on your plate for those attempting to Fight On fight the rush-hour traffic, the real food for thought will be: How will this Trojan team look without Lane Kiffin hiding behind his play chart? Will Ed Orgeron’s rah-rah influence at least make it more fun when sitting through a 17-14 game? Is Marquis Lee going to revert to old form, or is his knee situation really going to be an issue? A year ago, Lee had 345 yards in receiving (16 catches, two TDs), the but the No. 9 Trojans – remember, they were No. 1 not that long before this – endured a 39-36 upset over the underdog Wildcats in Tucson, Ariz., as senior Matt Scott outdueled senior Matt Barkley before both of them landed NFL jobs as backups.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Rich Rodriguez has been going with 6-foot-3 senior B.J. Denker (North Torrance High, Cerritos College) as his latest quarterback. While the Wildcats are 3-1 after a 31-13 loss to Washington, Rodriguez hasn’t been all that wild about his team’s passing attack ranking just 117th nationally at 111.3 yards per game. Denker has just one throw of greater than 20 yards to a wide receiver. “B.J. can play better than what he did, but he’s still our best option right now,” said Rodriguez. Arizona is running the prevent option now?


(Dodgers lead series 2-1)
Game 4: Dodger Stadium, 6:30 p.m., TBS:
Atlanta Braves v Miami MarlinsRicky
co is the pick for  Don Mat-
tingly in this elim-
ination contest. For now. Until he sleeps on it. More intriguing is Atlanta settling with “Big Game” Freddy Garcia, the 36-year-old who was cut by San Diego (San Diego) and barely survived in on the Orioles’ Triple-A roster but somehow had a 1.65 ERA in 27 innings for the Braves over three starts since he was claimed. Garcia has 10 post-season appearances with a 3.28 ERA in October, but no wins since the 2005 World Series with Chicago (when Juan Uribe was his shortstop). Expect to see Kris Medlin warming up early if needed. And for that matter, why couldn’t Mattingly use Kershaw to try to prevent the series from going back to Atlanta?
If necessary:
Game 5: Dodgers at Atlanta Game 5: 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, TBS

NHL: KINGS vs. N.Y. RANGERS, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m, FSW:
henrik-lundqvist-crossed-padsNo banner to raise this time. But it is a rare sight to see the Rangers come into town – even though they just had that exhibition game in Las Vegas where the Kings “won” 4-1, the two haven’t officially met in a regular-season game in L.A. since February, 2010, when Jonathan Quick outlasted Henrik Lundqvist, 2-1. The Kings folks advise to arrive early and hear the team’s “new anthem.”
Also this week:
Kings vs. Ottawa, Staples Center, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, FSW
Kings at Carolina, 4 p.m. Friday, FSW
Kings at Florida, noon Sunday, FSW

Oakland vs. Detroit (series tied 1-1)
Game 3: At Detroit, 10 a.m., MLB Network:
Former 50-game suspended shortstop Jhonny Peralta will be back in the Tigers’ lineup. Thanks, Jose Iglesias.
Game 4: At Detroit, 2 p.m., Tuesday, TBS
If necessary: Game 5: At Oakland, 6 p.m., Thursday, TBS

St. Louis vs. Pittsburgh (Pirates lead series 2-1)
Game 4: At Pittsburgh, noon, TBS:
The Dodgers may know pretty early in the day if the Pirates are their next-round opponents. But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves.
If necessary: Game 5: At St. Louis, 2 p.m., Wednesday, TBS

Tampa Bay vs. Boston (Red Sox lead series, 2-0)
Game 3: At Tampa, 3 p.m., TBS:
The Red Sox’s Clay Buchholz (12-1, 1.74) has a 3-1 mark with a 1.88 ERA in four starts since coming back from a shoulder injury that had him out more than three months. If the Rays have any ray of hope in coming back from an 0-2 deficit, this makes it all the more miraculously ridiculous. Still, the Rays haven’t been home in two weeks.
Also if necessary:
Game 4: At Tampa, 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, TBS
Game 5: At Boston, 2:30 p.m., Thursday, TBS

CLIPPERS at PORTLAND, 7 p.m., Prime Ticket:
Also this week:
Clippers at Utah, 6 p.m. Saturday, Prime Ticket

N.Y. JETS at ATLANTA, 5:20 p.m., ESPN:
No Tebo for ESPN to focus on. So why do they bother?


Remember the Spirits of St. Louis? Lindbergh references aside, you’ll will after this piece about the former ABA team that featured “Bad News” Barnes (above) and “Fly” Williams, and had a kid named Bob Costas doing play-by-play. But the real stonyline here is how former Spirits owners and Malibu resident Ozzie Silna (and brother Daniel) still profit from not being included in the ABA merger with the NBA. Encino-based Dan Forer, who also did the “Second Chance Season” ESPN documentary on Nick Young and Jordan Farmer when they were in high school, produced this one for part of the “30 for 30” series.


“LEAGUE OF DENIAL,” 9 p.m., KOCE-Channel 50:
helmetThe two-hour piece as part of the “Frontline” series tries to explain when the NFL knew that concussions were a long-term problem, and what did they do (or not do) about it. The truth isn’t apt to set them free as Mark Fainaru-Wada and brother Steve Fainaru of ESPN narrate much of this in connection with their book being released today: “League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth” (Crown Archetype, October 2013).

LAKERS vs. DENVER, at Ontario, 7 p.m., TWC SportsNet:
Also this week:
Lakers vs. Sacramento at Las Vegas, 7 p.m. Thursday, TWC SportsNet


DUCKS vs. N.Y. RANGERS, Honda Center, 7 p.m.,  Prime:
Now, it’s the Ducks’ home opener. Have the Rangers hung around long enough in So Cal to have them lose their hockey legs?
Also this week:
Ducks vs. Ottawa, Honda Center, 5 p.m. Sunday, Prime

N.Y. GIANTS at CHICAGO, 5:25 p.m., NFL Network:


2014 WORLD CUP QUALIFYING: U.S. vs. JAMAICA, in Kansas City, 4:30 p.m., ESPN:
The Americans already have their spot locked up for the big dance, but why not play the last two qualifiers as if they mean something. The 2-1 win at Jamaica, thanks to Brad Evans’ injury-time goal (above), may have signaled a point in the year with Team America turned a corner.


UCLA vs. CAL,, Rose Bowl,  7:30 p.m.,  ESPN2:
The Bruins, off to their first 4-0 start since 2005, tee it up against Cal quarterback Jaren Goff, who comes off a game where he set the school’s single-game passing park with 504 yards (33 of 59, 2 touchdowns, 1 pick). Of more important note: Goff and the Bears still were crushed by Washington State, 44-21. Goff has three games where he has thrown for 450 yards or more. Neither Aaron Rodgers, Kyle Boller, Rich Campbell nor Joe Roth ever did at the school. None may have had the same sort of distress in their careers either.

BradleyVsMarquezTIMOTHY BRADLEY VS. JUAN MANUEL MARQUEZ, world welterweight championship, Thomas & Mac Center in Las Vegas, 6 p.m., HBO  Pay Per View, $64.95:
Does the winner get a shot at Floyd Mayweather? The 40-year-old Marquez (55-6-1 with 40 KOs) has already been there, didn’t succeed at that. Bradley (30-0 with 12 KOs) once knocked off Manny Pacquiao, something Marquez has done as well.



WASHINGTON at DALLAS, Channel 4, 5:30 p.m.:
They’ll hype it as a rivalry game. Anything to give the viewers a reason to come under the tent.

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